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Three Supreme Court Justices Slam NPR “Mask” Report: “It is false”

Three Supreme Court Justices Slam NPR “Mask” Report: “It is false”

Chief Justice Roberts and Justices Gorsuch, Sotomayor Debunk Nina Totenberg Report That Gorsuch Rejected Sotomayor Request To Wear A Mask.

On Tuesday, Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch was being roasted and flambeed on Twitter by the Usual Suspects on the left after NPR Legal Affairs Correspondent Nina Totenberg filed a “report” alleging that there was a mask dispute between him and fellow Justice Sonia Sotomayor, a dispute that supposedly led Sotomayor to decide recently to join the court from her chambers via microphone when hearing cases and from home via telephone for their weekly conferences.

Per Totenberg, Sotomayor – who is 67 and who is high-risk for catching COVID due to having diabetes – “did not feel safe” around colleagues who didn’t wear masks. Because of this, Chief Justice John Roberts allegedly requested the other Justices mask up out of respect for her wishes. According to Totenberg’s supposed court sources, Gorsuch was the only one who refused, which Totenberg said was what led to Sotomayor deciding to take a different approach to how she conducted her daily business:

[Sotomayor] has been the only justice to wear a mask on the bench since last fall when, amid a marked decline in COVID-19 cases, the justices resumed in-person arguments for the first time since the onset of the pandemic.

Now, though, the situation had changed with the omicron surge, and according to court sources, Sotomayor did not feel safe in close proximity to people who were unmasked. Chief Justice John Roberts, understanding that, in some form asked the other justices to mask up.

They all did. Except Gorsuch, who, as it happens, sits next to Sotomayor on the bench. His continued refusal since then has also meant that Sotomayor has not attended the justices’ weekly conference in person, joining instead by telephone.

Naturally, numerous other “news” outlets picked up the story and ran with it, including the USA Today, CNBC, and CNN. Totenberg’s story launched a wave of pieces dunking on Gorsuch for allegedly not being a team player. WaPo cartoonist Ann Telnaes even labeled Gorsuch a “maskless manspreader.” CNN opinion writer Kara Alaimo, who is also a communications professor at Hofstra University, also ran with the “manspreading” angle in her write-up, suggesting misogyny was behind Gorsuch’s alleged power play.

MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, of course, jumped at the chance to run with the story:

To skeptics, however, the story raised some red flags. For starters, the Supreme Court is one of the few institutions in America where “leaks” are in short supply because they run a tight ship there and view reports of perceived partisan battles between colleagues as a serious affront to everything our nation’s court is supposed to stand for.

Secondly, a former law clerk to Gorsuch went off after the report went live, flatly denying the story and poking holes in it as it began to trend on Twitter:

Last night, Fox News Supreme Court reporter Shannon Bream first reported that her SCOTUS sources told her no such request from Roberts was made and that Sotomayor never asked Gorsuch to mask up:

In an update to the story earlier today, both Justices issued a rare on-the-record joint statement denying reports that there is a dispute between the two about masks:

Not long after that, Chief Justice John Roberts issued his own statement denying the story:

Though this should be cause for mass retractions on Twitter and at the outlets that ran with the original story and accompanying op/ed pieces, don’t count on it. Because not only is NPR standing by their story, but as we speak, blue check conspiracy theorists (some of who work at supposedly reputable news outlets) are busy doing their thing, suggesting Gorsuch and Sotomayor did not actually contradict what NPR reported:


It’s the “fake but accurate” defense all over again. Unfortunately, some things – and people – never change.

— Stacey Matthews has also written under the pseudonym “Sister Toldjah” and can be reached via Twitter. —


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Fact.. People who wear masks and are vaccinated are potential carriers just like those who do not wear masks and are unvaccinated!
Sotomayer is a total idiot just like Biden!

    healthguyfsu in reply to jrcowboy49. | January 19, 2022 at 4:04 pm

    Actually, Soto is not a total idiot in this case. She has age and diabetes as risk factors and she’s keeping distant because she knows that masks are not very effective against Omicron and Triple Vax is not as effective against Omicron as other variants.

It’s all so petty, so appropriate for this SC for these times

Anything that starts with, “Nina Totenberg reports….”, means it’s a complete and utter lie. That screeching old hag babysat God when he was a boy, and even he didn’t like her.

    MattMusson in reply to drsamherman. | January 20, 2022 at 8:17 am

    BlueAnon Nina is fighting back saying they are lying. She said earlier,

    “Ahh, but the strawberries! That’s—that’s where I had them. They laughed at me and made jokes, but I proved beyond the shadow of a doubt and with—geometric logic—that a duplicate key to the wardroom icebox DID exist!”

NPR Legal Affairs Correspondent Nina Totenberg should not be doing any more legal reporting. When you put out a story that is so totaly false that it has to be corrected by the Supreme Court you’re clearly not qualfied to be doing any “legal reporting”.

Nina Totenberg is not guilty of inaccurate reporting, rather she is an out and out liar.

    henrybowman in reply to Peabody. | January 19, 2022 at 7:16 pm

    Obama had this to say about the tragic problem…

      Peabody in reply to henrybowman. | January 19, 2022 at 9:21 pm

      Obama slams fake news! What’d he do, hit it with a hanky?

        henrybowman in reply to Peabody. | January 19, 2022 at 9:36 pm

        After losing the White House to Trump, Obama invented the term “fake news'” by warning America against it, with the implication that it was coming from the right… then proceeded to launch Operation Crossfire, which was four years of Marxist fake news. It’s the way Marxists telegraph their punches.

        On 15 June 1961, GDR [East German] head of state Walter Ulbricht said:
        “Nobody has the intention of building a wall.”
        Ulbricht’s response was surprising because no one had suggested the idea of an actual wall before.
        Two months later, construction work on the Berlin barrier began.
        If you don’t think there’s a lesson there…

          Milhouse in reply to henrybowman. | January 21, 2022 at 4:06 am

          I think you mean after Clinton lost the White House to Trump. But no, 0bama didn’t invent it, and it’s older than that.

          The first I remember it being used was by Clinton, during the 2016 campaign, and as far as I know she invented it. But she used it very differently from how it’s used now. She used it to refer to “news sources” that are openly and avowedly fake, such as the World Weekly News, the Onion and the Babylon Bee. Her complaint was that stories that originated in these fake news sources were circulating as if they were real news, and people were believing them.

          Trump either misunderstood her or deliberately changed the meaning. He picked the term up and started using it of stories from genuine news sources (i.e. sources that purport to genuinely report news), that he alleged were just as fake.

          In Clinton’s terms those would not be “fake news” but “false news”; news that purports to be true but isn’t. If Trump did understand that, then he was making the point that these sources lie so often that you can’t tell the difference between them and the fake sources. That they’re really just as fake as the fake sources, and dishonest to boot.

          Deliberate or not, that usage ate up the original one, and that is what the term now means.

It seems to be legally dangerous line to defiantly ignore a refutation of libelous claims when dealing with the highest court in the land.

I hope they sue her and twitter (for not enforcing their own terms) to oblivion.

    Eh the Twitterlings would rather believe a lie that fits in their world view.

    They are blatantly ignoring both Roberts and Sotomeyer/Gorsuch’s statements and doing word jenga with those statements claiming neither actually refutes what Totenberg reported.

      Dathurtz in reply to kyrrat. | January 20, 2022 at 9:05 am

      I don’t think twitter even has real people anymore. You ever see the pictures of hundreds of blue checks saying exactly the same thing at approximately the same time?

    Milhouse in reply to healthguyfsu. | January 21, 2022 at 4:10 am

    Nope. So long as Totenberg maintains that she trusts her original source, they’re all covered and can’t be sued. And Twitter is covered anyway; it is not required to enforce its terms if it doesn’t feel like it.

E Howard Hunt | January 19, 2022 at 4:08 pm

Never mind masks! If I had to sit within view of the wise Latina, I would make her wear a bag over her head, and I would wear one too in case hers fell off.

Mona Charen doubles down – Nope. Undisputed: Gorsuch was unmasked. Knew about Sotomayor’s health condition. Whether he was specifically requested to wear one is not the primary question. It’s a matter of courtesy and ethics.

    henrybowman in reply to Oracle. | January 19, 2022 at 7:21 pm

    You’re free to repudiate science and reality to show “courtesy and ethics” to someone else’s voodoo beliefs, whether they be masking, burning chickens to appease the gods, or pretending that a man is a woman. I choose not to not to humor someone by pretending that 2+2=5, even when it costs me nothing. That may not be courtesy, but it is the only true ethics.

    DaveGinOly in reply to Oracle. | January 19, 2022 at 10:09 pm

    “Whether he was specifically requested to wear one is not the primary question.”

    Lame attempt to reframe the narrative. Whether or not Gorsuch was “specifically requested to wear” a mask is “the primary question,” because the discussion is about what was reported and whether or not it was true. This is not about Gorsuch (or Sotomayor’s vulnerability to COVID), it’s about fake news posing as journalism.

Rachel Maddow pushing a completely made up story with zero independent fact checking?

Unprecedented! (sarc.)

I don’t believe either one. Is Sotomayor a toaster is the question.

Meanwhile, across the street members of the House of Representatives, AOC being one of them, have been able to vote by proxy for months now instead of showing up on the House floor in person.

Whether or not she’s physically in the room, Sotomayor is still doing her job. Part of me wonders if this fake news is being done deliberately to either resurrect the pack-the-court movement or in hopes that House Dems will be so enraged that they’ll try to impeach him, especially since it was him and not Merrick Garland who replaced Scalia.

Years ago, I listened to an interview with Totenkampf and Mike Rosen. Mike is a long time Denver radio host and a very smart interviewer. Zeroed right in on her intellectual dishonesty and she hung up on him.

Didn’t SCOTUS just rule
COVID is not an occupational hazard?

So what’s the beef? Soto stays in her office and dials in on a phone. Big deal.

    Dathurtz in reply to Doc-Wahala. | January 20, 2022 at 9:07 am

    It isn’t like she isn’t just gonna toe the prog line anyways. When she is in her office she doesn’t have to pretend to pay attention.

      Peabody in reply to Dathurtz. | January 20, 2022 at 9:24 am

      She doesn’t have to listen to the arguments since she has already made up her mind how she is going to vote on any case that comes before the court.

Butbutbut it’s Nina Totenberg. Has she written her retraction, er, clarification for this yet. I feel certain it will be an ‘explanation’ rather than a Fake News Correction, or heaven forbid, an actual apology.

Somebody set her up, kinda nice!

    The standard approach for modern media is to ‘circle back’ and tell the lie again, with a different coat of paint:

    Media: I have a source that says (story critical of Conservatives)
    Person: I talked to the person directly involved and they said it didn’t happen.
    Media: They’re lying. I stand by my anonymous source. (repeats story)
    Person: Now both parties to the conversation have come out and said the exact opposite of your story.
    Media: You’re misinterpreting what they said (repeats story, slightly changed)
    People: Now both people have come out and issued sworn statements saying your story is wrong.
    Media: (changes story to be “Republicans pounce on minor quibble”)

If the story were true, then Bravo! Mr. Gorsuch.

Of course it’s not true, as stated by the justices themselves. Totenburg is the same liar sh’e always been and NPR is nothing but a propaganda arm of the marxist democrat party.

And we PAY for this biased, Left Wing outfit.

    Milhouse in reply to Eddie Coyle. | January 21, 2022 at 4:18 am

    Depends what you mean by “pay for”. We don’t directly pay for it, in the sense that people often mean when they say that; i.e. people imagine that NPR is a government agency, funded directly by the taxpayers, like the BBC, and it isn’t.

    But it does receive grants, not only from the federal government but also indirectly from state and local governments, so that between one thing and another a good deal of its budget does come from taxpayers at some level.

IMHO, this has nothing to do with masks, or COVID, or vaccinations, or Sotomayor, or Gorsuch, It’s far more subtle than that. It’s a very deliberate attack on SCOTUS itself drawing attention to the idea that Sotomayor is the only justice that may be depended upon to be compliant with The Rules.